Dynasty Fantasy Football: 5 Tips to Win Your League

In the five years since I was introduced to dynasty fantasy football, I’ve had varying levels of success and made plenty of mistakes along the way. 

Among all my leagues, I’ve accrued close to 100 dynasty seasons, and I wanted to share some things I’ve learned that can help anyone ranging from beginners to even more advanced players.

>> READ: Everything Needed to Play, Win Dynasty Leagues

5 Dynasty League Tips

Adjust to Your League Settings 

This could mean anything from total league roster size to starting lineup spots or even scoring. Not every league is created equal, and if you come into a league with the same strategy each time, you won’t maximize your results.

Knowing whether a league has points for rushing first downs, long touchdown bonuses, tight end premium or six points for passing touchdowns can drastically alter strategy. 

Players like Derrick Henry and Nick Chubb might normally hit crazy ceilings in traditional leagues, but long touchdown bonuses and rushing first downs will boost their output weekly. This also puts running quarterbacks at even more of a premium in these leagues. 

Starting roster size is also essential. How many flexes are there? Do I have to start two or three wide receivers? Is it Superflex? 

In leagues with 10 or 11 starting spots, this might devalue the tight end position and put more of a premium on picking up good wide receivers.

Make sure to understand league settings and adjust appropriately to them (without over-adjusting).

Focus on Depth

This might differ based on league settings, but having good depth is crucial in most cases. 

Treating your top two or three bench spots as starters is a tactic you should consider implementing. The truth is players will get hurt, and the teams best prepared for injury tend to do the best. 

When building depth on Dynasty rosters, it’s wise to target positions where depth is harder to obtain. In Superflex leagues, grabbing a third quarterback in case of injury or bye weeks is smart. 

Your team might not look the best after your draft, but it’s rare to see Dynasty teams win championships without a solid second quarterback in Superflex. You’re protecting yourself in an injury-related scenario and limiting the pool of quarterbacks other teams can use.

In some scenarios, I’ve taken a fourth or fifth quarterback for that reason. When injuries to other teams’ quarterbacks happen, they become desperate to replace them. If you’re the only one with extra-worthwhile quarterbacks, you can set your own market in trades and get good value in return. 

Draft the Best Player Now, Trade for Need Later

In startup drafts, your focus should constantly be drafting the best player available. Many people do this, but it should be taken to an extreme sometimes. 

It’s OK to draft seven wide receivers and no running backs. If you’re in a tight end premium league and Mark Andrews and Kyle Pitts are the best players available, you can take them both. 

Leaning into league settings and understanding tier drop-offs should keep you more open-minded about drafting within that same tier, regardless of what you’ve already drafted. This allows you to play the long game and capitalize in the trade market when injuries arise without losing — and sometimes gaining — value.

>> READ: Dynasty WR Tier Rankings 

One of the biggest pitfalls is drafting based on needs and starting lineup requirements. Short-sighted drafting is an easy way to end up playing from behind constantly. Always think about what will help your team long term because situations are continually changing. 

Focus on Rookie RBs

Finding the perfect mix of immediate production and long-term value at running back is impossible. It’s what makes Bijan Robinson such a tantalizing, unique dynasty asset. 

Running backs are risky assets due to higher injury rates and how age affects them. 

A few years back, I did a study on how age impacts running back performance in fantasy leagues, and there’s a clear correlation. Each year a running back is held onto, the risk of not returning any value increases. 

On a year-by-year basis, some of the more elite running backs tend to be in their mid-20s. Players like Christian McCaffrey, Austin Ekeler, Dalvin Cook and Henry have been better fantasy running backs over the past few years.

Still, for every one of these players, there’s an Ezekiel Elliott or Leonard Fournette, who have little to no value. Even if they hit like a McCaffrey or Ekeler, we’ve seen their average draft position start to dwindle because of their age. 

If you want elite production at running back without much risk, you must invest in young players; even then, there is still some risk. 

Recent examples of highly talented players who got hurt and haven’t fully recovered their value are Breece Hall, Javonte Williams, Cam Akers and J.K. Dobbins. These were fluky injuries, but it still shows the risk of holding any premium asset at running back. 

The best way to approach this position is to let the other positions of your team be strengths and play the “shotgun” strategy at running back. 

Ideally, I structure my team to have at least one good wide receiver on my bench and focus the later rounds almost exclusively on running backs with high upside, pass-catching roles or plodders who score touchdowns. 

I want at least 50 percent of my Dynasty roster to be running backs. Many of these running backs will end up not doing much, but you can get spot starts in bursts from a bunch of them and occasionally get lucky and have one of them become a solid contributor. 

You can also quickly churn the waiver wire and make roster cuts easily during the offseason to allow new rookies to come in. 

>> READ: Best Way to Hit on Late-Round Picks 

Rookie Picks Are Key

While running backs and seemingly every other position have risk due to injury or underperformance, rookie picks are a unique asset. They only accrue value closer to draft season. 

Whether you’re in a startup or trade talks, finding ways to accumulate as many rookie picks as possible is always a smart move. One of my favorite tactics is to trade down from my top picks in startup drafts and grab an extra three to six future first-rounders. 

The fun thing is rookie picks are simply a currency. You can use them as assets if you want to package and trade for a star. If you want to trade down and accumulate more, you can do that. You can simply draft a rookie, too. 

Having multiple first-rounders in drafts allows a lot of flexibility in moving around the board in rookie drafts to get the players you want. Dynasty is about value, and rookie picks are an easy way to gain more value for your team.

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